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Re: personal rights vs. group needs

Uther, questioning everything and being unusually philisophical.  Take it 
however you will...

On Fri, 28 Apr 1995, Kate Spears wrote:

> You are correct, Lady melys, that it is unfortunate that there are those who 
> are unable to look at different lifestyles/belief systems with acceptance and 
> an open mind.  But that is the reality of the world in which we live.  

Is it?  Do we really live in a world with that many people who are 
closedminded?  I don't think it's necessary to reach everyone, or even 
to try.  In fact, I don't think it's possible.  The very nature of the 
diversity statement dictates that there will always be people who don't 
agree.  As a further question, why should we conform to them - why not 
them to us?  Does it really help out the Society if we do not show our 
true face?

> And you are correct that you have a right to behave/dress however you like.
> That right exists, however, until your exercising that right begins to impact 
> negatively on those with whom you associate.
> (I'm not sure who said it, but I think the operative phrase here is: Your 
> right to swing your fist ends where my nose begins.)

This statement does not however address the cases where your nose is in 
the way of my fist.. :) <HUMOR!>  But with a serious point - once again, 
who is in the wrong?  Am I wrong for dressing and behaving differently, 
or are you wrong for not accepting what I am?  As an illustration, 
consider this -

You are walking down a street and encounter a man, dressed up as a 
woman.  It is obvious, not by the makeup, the dress, or size 15 high heels, 
but by the 5 o'clock shadow.  Later when describing the person to a friend, 
how likely is it that the word "strange" would be used?  Who would be 
wrong - the person for dressing differently, or you for not accepting them?

> When we agree to participate in a society we inherently agree to give up, in 
> differing quantities, our rights as individuals,  in return for the benefits 
> that the society brings such as fellowship, companionship, and 
> interdependence.  
> IMHO, agreeing to curb some behaviors that "may" reflect negatively on the 
> SCA and to do my best to put the Society in the best possible light while 
> people are first getting to know us is a small price to pay for the richness 
> and depth that members of the SCA have given to my life. 

For you, yes.  But I value my independence over my interdependence.  I 
will not blindly conform to what others want me to be.  Is it more/less 
evil for me to compromise my integrity than for them to compromise theirs?

> Lady Aislynn

Lest ye flame, one last point.  What better way to show that everyone has 
different values than the fact that we disagree?

For those might be wondering, no, I am not a transvestite :)